“Pressure pushing down on me pressing down on you no man ask for!” Queen sums up what first date jitters really feel like in their classic ‘82 release “Under Pressure”. The new study issued today, Pressure Points, commissioned by Plenty of Fish, reveals half of the single population in the United States, hasn’t been on a single date in the last year and pressure may have something to do with it!
Most singles (59%) rate their self esteem as average or lower, so it’s no surprise they feel a great deal of pressure on first dates. With nerves, usually comes second guessing – “am I talking enough?” “am I attractive enough?” “am I fun enough?”. If all of this sounds familiar, you’re certainly not alone.
Four in ten singles (40%) say the number one pressure that comes with going on a first date, is to be:
- Interesting (40%)
- Talkative (16%)
- Fun (12%)
Everyone has at least something that makes them unique, perhaps you’re just unsure how to express it on a first date. Maybe you’re worried about boasting too much about your job, or boring your company with talk about your collection of postcards from different countries you’ve travelled to.
Surprisingly, 27% of singles have gone as far as to withhold a specific hobby/interest because it could be considered unattractive by someone they wanted to date.
The truth is, you’re overthinking it. You should never shy away from being yourself on a date. If you have a neat postcard collection, mention that! Who knows where the conversation could lead, maybe you end up talking about all the countries you’ve visited and learn that your date loves to travel as well. When you’re passionate about things you genuinely like to do, it will help you and your date figure out if you share any commonalities.
If you’re feeling a little nervous at the start of a date, why not break the ice and admit you’re a touch nervous? Your date most likely feels the same way and immediately you two can relax a little more, now that you’ve admitted you’re on the same page.
If you are feeling the nerves before a date, there are five things that can help you ease the pressure, as identified by singles in the study.
- Give yourself a pep talk (22% of singles do this)
- Talk to a friend or family member (22%)
- Practice conversation starters (14%)
- Look up your date on social media (14%)
- Exercise (14%)
All of these activities can help you relieve some of the stress before meeting someone for the first time! Turning to a family member or friend can be a really great self-esteem booster, and looking up your date on social media can give you a better idea of their interests (if their profiles are public). Exercise can also help you clear your mind and organize your thoughts.
If you have other ways to cope with those first date nerves, we’d love to hear them! Comment below with your tips and tricks.